As we dive into the summer months, the PGA Tour is already in full swing. But even beyond the big four events, the PGA provides action-packed tournaments every week, which means plenty of chances to become familiar with golf betting odds and place your bets.
Of course, there are certain things worth knowing about how to bet on PGA golf.
Much like the best golfers, those who know how to bet on golf will pore over details and work out strategies that enhance their chances of picking a winner. From wind direction to the cut of the rough, the smallest things make the biggest differences in golf. But you don’t need to know Bermuda grass from Zoysia to place a successful golf bet. Let’s look at some basic tips that can help you pick more winners this season when PGA betting.
Understanding the Types of Bets
Golf is unique in the world of sports. With the exception of a few events each year like the Ryder Cup, President’s Cup, and the Zurich Classic, golfers don’t compete as part of a team. And unless it’s a match play event, they don’t directly compete against each other. Instead, each week, golfers compete against the entire field to post the lowest score and win the tournament.
Since the sport itself is different in this way, betting is also different. There are a few types of bets worth familiarizing yourself with if you plan on betting on the PGA:
- Futures – A futures bet is the main form of golf betting. Put simply, you’re betting on what will happen in the future. In the case of golf, this generally means you’re betting on who will win any given tournament. You can also break things down further by betting on the winners of each round as well as the range where someone will finish (top 5, top 10, etc.). Odds on future bets will tend to have large payouts as it’s hard to predict who will win any given week. That said, payouts will lessen with lower risk bets. That means a top 10 bet will not pay out as much as a bet on someone to win.
- Matchups – This type of bet is one you can find at many sportsbooks. It will allow you to bet on one golfer over another. You simply pick who you think will have the better score. These bets may be for one round or an entire tournament. Some books will also offer matchups where one player is given a stroke advantage to make up for a difference in skill. This is similar to a spread bet in other sports.
- Make/miss cut – Every golf tournament (match play excepted) has four rounds. After the first two rounds, a cut is made that reduces the field of competitors and eliminates the worst scores. Different tournaments may have different cut rules, but generally, about half the field will be eliminated after round two.With this style bet, you’re simply betting on whether the golfer you choose will make or miss the cut after the completion of the second round.
- Live Bets – Tiger Woods has won 15 major tournaments. Of those 15, do you know how many times he was leading the tournament going into the final round? 14. The only time he won without having the lead entering the last day was his comeback victory in the 2019 Masters.This shows that as a tournament progresses, you can get a feel for who has a chance to win. That’s where live betting comes in. While golf odds will adjust as the tournament progresses, so too will your knowledge, meaning you have a better chance of picking a winner when live betting.
Golf Betting Strategies for the PGA Golf 2022 Season
Now that you understand the types of bets available to you, let’s dig into some strategies that may help you tilt the betting odds in your favor. These points can give you a better chance of narrowing the field and choosing winners.
Strokes Gained: Who to Watch
The first place we can look to when trying to understand golf is statistics. And perhaps no statistic is more useful than strokes gained. While still a relatively new statistical category (the first strokes gained stat was only introduced in 2011), strokes gained can be useful as it compares every golfer to the tour average. It covers four different categories of the game:
- Strokes Gained: Putting – The club every golfer uses the most throughout a round is their putter, so it pays to be good with it. This stat shows how everyone is performing on the greens when compared to the tour average. You’ll tend to find steady performers like Cam Smith and Louis Oosthuizen around the top of this category.
- Strokes Gained: Around the Green – Every golfer wants to hit every green with their approach shots, but things don’t always go as planned. The best golfers in this category, such as Jordan Speith or Patrick Reed, manage to convert their up and downs and avoid big numbers on their scorecards.
- Strokes Gained: Approach – Your wizards with the irons live at the top of this statistical category. Here you’ll find the smooth swings of Colin Morikawa, Justin Thomas, and Will Zalatoris as they’re able to consistently land balls on the green and near the pin once they’re in range.
- Strokes Gained: Off the Tee – Finally, we find the bombers who are the best at wielding the big stick. John Rahm, Dustin Johnson, and Rory McIlroy are names near the top of this list who can shorten holes with their booming tee shots. However, it’s not just distance but also accuracy that matters, which is why shorter hitters like Morikawa can also be near the top of this stat.
Now that you know the four strokes gained stats, it’s simply a matter of totaling them up and that’ll be your winner, right? While that’s not a bad strategy, it’s far from foolproof as there’s still a lot more to consider week-to-week on the tour.
Horses for Courses: Betting Strategies for This Year’s Green
Tour pros aren’t just competing against each other every week, they’re also competing against the course itself. Sloping greens, pot bunkers, water hazards, and dense rough are just some of the obstacles preventing low scores. Knowing about that week’s course can help you determine what stats will be most important.
Let’s look at two major venues from this year: Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma and The Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland. These courses host the 2022 PGA Championship and The Open Championship, respectively.
- Southern Hills is a par 70 course that is 7,365 yards long.
- The Old Course is a par 72 course that is 7,297 yards long. (This was the length when it hosted The Open in 2015, this year’s open may be slightly longer).
Just knowing this about the courses shows you that Southern Hills requires you to travel further using fewer shots. That could favor long hitters so long as they keep the ball in play. Also, St. Andrews is a links course, meaning approach play and around-the-greens play will probably be important factors.
Beyond the majors, it’s also worth looking at the field that has entered. Earlier in 2022, Jon Rahm was favored to win the Mexico Open and he went on to victory. Many top golfers skipped that tournament which is why he was the clear favorite before hitting a single shot.
Use This Year’s Forecast to Make Your Play
Wind, rain, and cold temperatures all affect how a golf ball flies through the air and lands on the green. Some players are more suited to inclement weather as they’re able to keep their ball flight low, avoiding the conditions, and in turn, raising their PGA Championship odds. A golfer like Shane Lowry, who learned the game battling the winds of Ireland, might be one of the better betting options when the weather looks to be a factor.
Once you’ve done your research, you should have a feel for who you like on any given week. Here are a few other tips that can help you come to your final picks:
- Watch the line – Line movement in sports betting is something you don’t want to ignore. Some golfers are more popular and attract bets even when they aren’t playing well. Other golfers may not be as well known, and you may see better value than you expected. Do your research first, then watch the line. When you see value, that’s a good place to put your money.
- Patience – Anyone who plays golf will tell you it can be a frustrating game that requires an even temper and plenty of patience. Golf betting can be that way, too. You can’t win every bet, and trying to make up for a string of losses with big rebound prop bets is dangerous. Stay patient. Stick to your plan. The results will follow.
- Parlays are best used sparingly – A parlay is when you string multiple bets together to maximize your potential payout. Sounds good, but if any part of your parlay loses, so does your entire bet. Be judicious when you opt for a parlay. Even a small bet can pay out well, but a big bet that loses because of one miss can feel worse than a shanked approach shot.
Tipico: Better than a Hole-in-One
For tour golfers, every weekend is another chance at glory. That’s true for sports betting as well. And the best way to place your bets on this year's PGA Tour is at Tipico. Our online sportsbook makes it easy to bet on every PGA Tour event conveniently using your iOS or Android device. So put your tee in the ground, grab your driver, and take your best shot with Tipico!